constitutional convention

Political discussions in the United States often include assertions about what leading figures, especially the framersof the Constitution, would have thought, said, or done about contemporary political problems.Midterm essay prompt: Imagine some of the authors read and discussed so far this semester appeared together atMohonk Mountain House sometime this week having learned about American history and contemporary politics.Imagine their discussion of some interesting and important issues, focusing on major themes in American politicsand American political thought, reflecting on their ideas, the course of American history, and recent andcontemporary politics.Your assignment: Summarize their conversation making detailed, appropriate references to course readings.Format: you may write the exam in a standard essay form or as a transcript of the conversation (like James MadisonsNotes on the Constitutional Convention). You may include yourself as an interlocutor (a participant in theconversation), as moderator, questioner, or an equal participant or add your own views in a conclusion.Like some constitutional phrases, the phrases some of the authors and some interesting and important issues,major themes are vague in order to allow flexibility.One option: 4 authors, 3 themes. You may choose fewer authors and/or themes; if so, be sure to focus on authors andthemes that you can credibly assert are the most important authors and themes and to discuss those in greater detailthan would be the case with more authors and themes.While excellent midterms may be written in many ways, as a general rule, best to include at least one citation to: aFederalist paper, an Anti-Federalist paper, Constitutional Convention debate, and one other textLength: No specific length requirement. Focus on quality not number of words or pages or tricks with spacing.A typed, carefully considered, well-organized response, focused on the contemporary relevance of major themes inAmerican political thought, with frequent, detailed, appropriate, accurate use of course readings and discussions,illustrated with short, well-chosen quotations, accompanied by accurate citations, is due Thursday, October 7.(Citation format: may be somewhat informal; indicate in parentheses after the reference or quotation the author, texttitle, and page number. For Federalist Papers, use, for example, Federalist 1:1 for Federalist paper #1, page 1; forConstitutional Convention debates indicate the speaker, date of the debate, and page number.Criteria for evaluation:1. Appropriate selection of significant themes of enduring and contemporary relevance2. Appropriate selection of authors and texts addressing those themes3. Insightful analysis of ideas presented4. Effective comparisons and contrasts of the ideas of different authors5. Thoughtful application of the arguments from previous centuries to enduring and current controversies6. Detailed, frequent, appropriate, accurate references to texts and ideas7. Accurate citations8. Good organization9. Original ideasMidterm Dos and Donts:Do:Focus on the most important ideas, issues, problems, and themes in American Political Thought,Provide citations for the ideas you describe.Use short, appropriate quotations.Make clear you understand quotations you choose.Summarize quotations in your own words.Let me know if you have questions.DontDont discuss time travel, life after death, how strange contemporary technology would be to people from anothercentury, the internet, bright lights, big cities, indoor plumbing, the beautiful views from Mohonk, etc.Dont quote long passages (keep quotations short).Dont plagiarize.TIPS1. Take time to reread and revise your paper.2. Get right to the point! Avoid vague, general statements that could introduce many different essays; for example;dont begin by writing, Throughout history, people have had many problems. Pro tip: revise the introduction after youve written the assignment.The reason for this tip: Once youve written the essay youll have a better idea of how to introduce it.3. Structure your essay well. Pro tip: If you dont start with an explicit outline before writing, once youve written a draft find theoutline implicit in what you have written. To do so, identify in a word or phrase the main point of eachparagraph, make a list of those and note how much attention (space) you gave each point. Consider the list youcreated and whether you should change the order or how much emphasis you have given each point.4. Make the structure of your essay clear: use paragraphs with good topic sentences.Start a new paragraph when introducing a new idea; the first sentence should clearly identify the topic of theparagraph. In revising, make changes to create new paragraphs when you start a new point. Think aboutwhether you should change the first sentence to make the paragraph clearer. Think about whether each sentencethat follows belongs in that paragraph.5. Proofread your revised essay Pro tip: read your essay out loud when proofreading, including punctuation marks.6. Give your essay a good title that effectively conveys the main point you want to make.Consider adding a subtitle that identifies another important aspect of your paper.